Wednesday, February 29

Jack's First Hair Cut

Last week I gave Mr. Jack his first hair cut!  He is 20 months old, which means he was the youngest of our kids to have his first hair cut.  His hair has grown in sort of funny on the top, plentiful on the top and in the back but sort of sparce on either side.  We left the top alone, I trimmed only a bit that fell into his eyes, but I cut the back that would hang over his shirt collar and I trimmed over his ears.  It's hard to tell in the photos but it did make a big change (to me)!
before

Friday, February 24

My Babies

Playing with matching cards.  Found out that if we do it on the stair case, he can be super wiggly and do "donkey kicks" while working!

One of his favorite places to play- Mommy and Daddy's bed!  I don't know why I bother to make our bed every day!

Love this pic of Luke.  They both love playing in our bed so much, they always wind up wrestling- good thing it's a king size!

This little girlie loves her new helmet.  She's doing "tricks" on her scooter now, I'll need to take a video soon!
Another busy week gone by...  I had two evening meetings with clients, we're dealing with getting Ryan's car fixed, Jack got a little cold on Wednesday (and therefore hasn't been napping) and today Beth developed a fever.  We've been so fortunate to hardly be sick this winter!  Our last fever episode was in November when we were taking our family photos... I have noticed that they hadn't been sick but I didn't actually want to say it out loud! 

Tomorrow I'm attending a half-day retreat with a Catholic author/blogger, Rachel Balducci.  I'm traveling with some girlfriends and I'm really looking forward to the outing!  Ryan has spent a couple of his nights this week assembling his new basketball goal... He said, "It's not as easy as Ikea furniture!"  Ha ha! 

He also gave in and mowed our backyard today... The weeds were tall but the ground was wet.  Now, I haven't complained much about our yard (on my blog, I complain in real life too much!) but it's seriously a marsh.  The off-and-on rain, in conjunction with our aerobic septic tank that sprays our yard every morning, means we have sitting water at some point at all times.  The yard is 85% weeks, 5% grass, 10% crawfish holes.  We can't play out in the back at all.  For me, it's very frustrating because part of the reason we moved into this house nearly two years ago was because we wanted a big yard- and now we can't even use it!  The kids desperately need outdoor time, and I'm thankful we have a long driveway that they can ride their bikes on since we have no sidewalks in our neighborhood.  But not being able to use our backyard is very frustrating for me.  We've decided that before we add our fence (which our landowner's association has so graciously approved), we're going to add MORE dirt to the backyard and add new sod to a good portion of it.  We don't know what else to do!  I'm hoping we can get this project done soon so that we can get our fence in once the weather starts getting warmer and drying up the ground a bit.

Wednesday, February 22

Mardi Gras and Ash Wednesday

To celebrate Mardi Gras yesterday we had some friends come over to make masks and play!  They had a "parade" around the living room and danced to some cajun music!  I made a King Cake to share with everyone, but I think the moms liked it more than the kids did. :-)



Puzzle!

This morning Luke completed his firetruck puzzle all by himself! Quite an accomplishment given it took several adults quite some time the first time we solved it! Great job Luke!


Tuesday, February 21

Tomorrow is Ash Wednesday:



Although I'm still nursing Jack, I feel like tomorrow is the first day of fasting that I should observe in nearly 6 years! I don't feel very ready for this Lent, and as I contemplate how to draw nearer to the Lord over the next month I don't know what He's asking of me.  But, I have a few ideas, and one of my goals will be to simplify.  How I will put this into action, I'm not yet sure!

Many prayers for blessed and repentful Lenten season for all of my friends and family!

Wednesday, February 15

Valentine's Day

Last night I passed out at 9:30 pm, and here's why...

We started off our Valentine's day by dropping Ryan off at work at 7:45 am.  Yes, his car is in the shop again!  We dropped off some library books and then went home to make some breakfast and do a little bit of school before...

Luke's first day of gymnastics!  We have a new gym by our house and Luke's class was actually the very first class ever!  Luke LOVED it.  He was smiling from ear to ear during the entire 50-minute class!  They started on the trampolines (good move) and then moved to a couple of circuits before doing some running around.  He talked about it for the rest of the day and can't wait to go back!

Monday, February 13

Beth's Saint Book

I was gone on Saturday morning and Ryan started a project with Beth!  Here's her "saint book" she drew, I asked her to explain to the camera what she drew on each page and why, she added everything else!


Thursday, February 9

Getting Messy

I'm on Pinterest.  I know it can be a time-sucker for some people, but I have to admit that it's really great for me!  I'm not addicted (yet) and I have gotten some really wonderful inspiration for home ideas, kid's activities, and recipes.  I've completed quite a few "pins," but my favorite part is when things are slow around here and the kids are begging for an activity I use Pinterest as my resource.

Last week, I mixed glue and shaving cream with food coloring.  They had SO much fun, though their hands were stained for a day! 




Another day, I put a lot of glue on big piece of paper and suggested they write letters/spell words with some beans.  They wound up smearing the glue everywhere, and getting the beans nice and sticky.  Then, Luke learned that when glue dries on your hands it gets sort of peely, and he didn't like that!


This day we brought out our aroma dough (GF play-doh). I found some pages that I could laminate and then use the mats to fill in the pieces that are missing (like a face without eyes, nose, or mouth- like in Beth's photo) and Beth really loved these mats.  Luke is still trying to perfect rolling his dough out into a snake!  And surprisingly, it only took one bite of aroma dough for Jack to realize he'd rather play with it than eat it!

I know people joke about their Pinterest addiction, but I just love it!  I know it will be of great help to me in the future too, especially as we embark on our home education journey this fall!

On a similar subject of messy activities, I was talking to a friend the other day about learning how to be a mom of boys.  We both had girls first and boys to follow, and we talked to each other about how it's just been so different!  Our boys are both drawn to the outdoors, mud and dirt (Luke actually calls it "the muck and mire"), swings and monkey bars, sticks, trash and gross things.  Beth likes those things too, don't get me wrong, but as a three-year-old she was perfectly content to sit inside and play dolls or color a page from her book.  "Sit" is not in Luke's vocabulary!  So my friend and I were talking about these differences, and how we're trying to change our ways of thinking.  One of my favorite books I've read about it is called Boys Will Be Boys, and it's about encouraging them and fostering their male-ness.  It's helped me understand how I can serve their natural needs better!  I'm also about to read How Do You Tuck in a Superhero, as I'm going to the author's day-long retreat in a couple of weeks, but I've heard this is more of a humor book about raising boys.  Maybe I can prepare myself for what's to come!  I'm trying to plan more hands-on messy activities, and trying to get them outside to play more, though it's been hard with all of the rain!  I'm also watching Luke interact with other boys, gently encouraging him to play fairly, use his words, but also to stand up for himself.  He's really growing up so much!

Wednesday, February 8

Gifts

 I was going through some of my old posts and realized I never posted photos of the beautiful cards and gifts we received after my miscarriage in September.  We received some beautiful letters from sweet friends and family members, some who have sadly miscarried before and personally understood how devastating our loss was.  My book club girlfriends brought over an Edible Arrangement, which included some yummy chocolate-covered strawberries (on of my all-time favorites).  Some of my homeschooling friends sent a card and a rosebush, which unfortunately doesn't look too good right now in the middle of "winter" so I didn't take a photo of it, but it's still alive!  I intend on planting it after we get our fence up in the backyard, in the garden outside my bedroom window so I can see it from my bed.  We're planning on making that "Samuel's Garden," and will include this stone sent by a very special friend:
The stone has been in my kitchen since we received it because I don't want to put it outside! 

Ryan gave me a beautiful box with a crucifix with a couple of medals and Christmas ornament that we hung on the tree.  The box is on our display case, the ornament we'll bring it out every year and think of our little saint.

Ryan and I are both okay.  It's still hard to think about the milestone dates, and knowing it'll be something carried around with me forever in my OB records, but it changed our hearts- and our family- forever.  We were blessed with a few short weeks, and for those weeks with my fourth baby I am still thankful.
 
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